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Actor Rainn Wilson became famous for his role in The Office. While it remains the role he’s most closely associated with, Wilson has taken on several others of note, including one in a 2020 series. Discover what the actor told an Instagram follower, in which he compared the two projects.

Rainn Wilson starred in ‘The Office’

Wilson is best known for portraying Dwight Schrute in the long-running NBC sitcom The Office. Dwight is a no-nonsense associate at Dunder Mifflin Scranton, passionate about his farm and his work. He is in constant competition with Jim Halpert (John Krasinski), who enjoys pranking Dwight — though they later develop a friendship.

When The Office began, Wilson was among just four stars — including Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, and Steve Carell — credited as part of the main cast. The actor remained on the show throughout its nine-season run. He was set to star in a spinoff, The Farm, but it didn’t get the green light from the network.

What has Wilson done in the years since?

Rainn Wilson attends the premiere of Warner Bros. Pictures and Gravity Pictures' 'The Meg' at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on August 6, 2018 in Hollywood, California.
Rainn Wilson | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Before The Office, Wilson was best known for an arc on the HBO series Six Feet Under and for small roles in popular films such as Almost Famous and America’s Sweethearts. During the show’s run, he took on his first top-billed movie, starring in the superhero comedy Super (helmed by Guardians of the Galaxy‘s James Gunn).

Since The Office went off the air in 2013, Wilson has continued to act on the big and small screens. He held recurring roles on CBS series Star Trek: Discovery and Mom. The actor has done a lot of voice acting, portraying Lex Luthor in several direct-to-video animated DC films, such as Justice League Dark: Apokolips War.

His new series, ‘Utopia’ 

Aside from The Office, Wilson has had just one leading cast role on TV, starring in the short-lived Fox crime dramedy Backstrom. Years later, the actor has returned with Utopia, an Amazon Prime Video drama. The eight-episode first season of the series dropped on the streaming service on September 25, 2020.

Utopia is about a world in which a comic book of the same name is revealed to be not only factual but part of a larger conspiracy involving a deadly virus. Wilson portrays Michael Stearns, a scientist set on saving the world. He co-stars alongside Dan Byrd (Cougar Town), Sasha Lane (American Honey), and John Cusack.

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After Utopia was made available to stream, Wilson encouraged his Instagram followers to tune in. He went live on the platform, in a video which he later shared on his grid, during which he explained to his fans the show was “like Stranger Things acid.” “Watch Utopia! On Amazon Prime NOW,” Wilson wrote in the caption.

Many chimed in, expressing excitement for the series. But one person replied, “Think the show is good generally. However for people who’ve watched the original British series on which this is based, it is impossible not to compare. And its not as gripping as the original unfortunately.”

Utopia is adapted from the 2013 U.K. series of the same name, which ran for two seasons on Channel 4. Wilson pointed out that this is something it has in common with the one for which he’s best known. “Like The Office?” he replied. The Office was adapted from Ricky Gervais’ original BBC series.